MOUNTAIN BIKING IN VERBIER
Whispers of a possible summer season have now turned to shouts from the mountaintops – Verbier is open for business again! Switzerland reopened its borders this week, Verbier’s lift system is back up and running again, as are the restaurants, cafés and shops. After recently being named the World’s safest country for Covid-19, Switzerland has dropped all quarantine restrictions into the country, so there really is no better time to visit.
If you want to avoid crowded beaches this year, then leave the flipflops at home and head to the beautiful mountains of the Haute Valais and let your summer adventure begin. Whilst considering options far from the madding crowds, what could be better than your own private chalet, personal chef and chalet manager, coupled with two-wheeled excursions through glacier-clad mountains and the pine forests in the legendary clean Swiss air?
Verbier is a great base for exploring other resorts and areas such as Chamonix which is only an hour’s drive away. Our Exclusively Verbier concierge team are based in Verbier all year round and can suggest the very best routes and the most beautiful spots to inspire your ride, whilst arranging to drop you off at the location of your choice and prepare a replenishing meal upon your return. Here in the Alps the options are limited only by the time you have available.
HIRING BIKES & EQUIPMENT
If you’d prefer to travel light, then our team is at hand to arrange all the equipment you require, including both full suspension and hard tail mountain bikes, e-bikes and road bikes. If e-bikes are your thing, then the amazing e-bike festival in August is worth a visit. Or, if road bikes are your passion, the 2020 Road Cycling World Championships are being held nearby in Martigny and Aigle from 20th-27th September. For true road bike aficionados, you’ll recognise the climb from Le Chable to Verbier as one of the stages of the Tour de France in 2009. Why not unleash your inner Geraint Thomas and see how you fare?
The Verbier Bike Park has recently reopened, and with 6km of serious downhill tracks running from Ruinettes to the Médran in Verbier, is a must for downhill fans. The 700m vertical altitude drop makes it more suitable for speedsters and hardcore downhillers, however, you have to start somewhere, and the park offers four different gradients of trail – green, blue, red and black – for beginners, intermediates and experts respectively. Think of it as an equivalent to choosing a ski run based upon your ability.
There are four downhill tracks available, stretching for over 20km, of which 10% are classified as green, 20% blue, 40% red and 30% black. Exciting new obstacles and ramps are being developed all the time, which should give riders of all levels the challenge they seek.
Our Exclusively Verbier concierge team can arrange your journey in style to the park and prepare tickets in advance with unlimited access to the Ruinettes bubble lift. We’ve also partnered with Verbier Gravity and can arrange pro-riders from the Verbier bike team to show you around the trails, telling all you need to know about the park and the obstacles to be encountered on the way. For a “Brakeless” session, we advise booking with your Exclusively Verbier concierge manager at the time of your holiday reservation so that we can also arrange your lift pass, bike hire and protective equipment at the same time from our partners Mountain Air.
To track your performance improvements during your stay, you can even hire a “Freelap” timer gadget that will time your descent on three different sections of the black “Tire’s Fire” piste – just like an F1 car’s telemetry feeding data back to your very own performance engineers! The Verbier bike park is open from early June to late October every summer.
If you prefer to take life at a more leisurely pace, then there’s plenty of mountain biking that is suitable for families or individuals who want to discover Verbier and its surrounding terrain and villages. Alternatively, if you’re not sure where to head and which trails would be best for you, our Exclusively Verbier concierge team can arrange guided bike tours around the area.
The lifts are open until mid-September and the cable cars comfortably accommodate your bike or offer specifically adapted racks on the side allowing you to spend more of your time riding incredible Alpine terrain rather dragging yourself up steep inclines. Things never get too busy, even in the high months of July and August, so social distancing in the lifts is very straightforward and well-organised. By using the lift system, far more trails are accessible to riders of all levels in the valley, as most of the lifts within the valley permit bikes to be taken on board free of charge.
Our Exclusively Verbier team can arrange lift passes in advance. However, if you’re here for a few days and are going up and down many times during your stay, it’s more economical to purchase a Sports Activity Pass which gives you 6 days’ unlimited access to Verbier’s lift system. Alternatively, we can arrange full transport of your bikes and equipment plus your guests to any destination of your choosing, with a picnic of hamper of your favourite treats to make your ride that little bit more enjoyable.
As we wait for the summer season to get going again and are looking for alternatives and adjusting to the new normal, few places are surrounded by wide open spaces with boundless tracks to explore in your own personal bubble, matched with faultless cuisine and unrivalled luxury. Our Exclusively Verbier concierge team can help you plan the most exhilarating break or the most leisurely one. Find your own pace in style with our full team to support your journey and then return to a chalet in the mountains for supper on the firepits in the cool mountain air. It’s not your average summer break, but isn’t that the point?
Founder and Managing Director